The good news this morning is that I can’t think of a single 19th century work of fiction that featured eye-rolling. Some that caused it, but none that feature it. Tomorrow is the opening of the little Christmas art show at the Rio Grande County Museum and I’m both dreading and looking forward to it. Yesterday I did some work on the large crane painting and I’m not sure at all how that painting is going. It’s an exploration, an adventure in a small sense. It’s a strange thing to be attempting to paint mystery, solitude and magic, all pretty abstract, but they were part of the moment last spring that led to the painting I’m working on now.
This is how I left it yesterday. I’ve begun painting the small trees and I’m using metallic silver oil paint. This morning I got a sense of how it will be. The paint — though not dry — was somewhat more settled and the morning light hit it at an angle.
Back in the 90s I was in Laguna Beach with a friend and saw the work of a Russian artist, an emigré, who painted large beautiful paintings that gave the effect of being icons. One of the reasons was he used metallic paint. I loved his work. I’ve used gold metallic paint (made with bronze particles) in a few paintings. I like it. It does its job really well.
In my imagination, this scene with the crane needed silver paint because it would kind of disappear depending on the light. I don’t know if it’s going to work that way, but it’s fun finding out. The thing about cranes is now you see them, now you don’t.
Bear and I took a walk yesterday and there are far fewer cranes than there have been. It’s OK. They have to go down to New Mexico for Christmas. I’ll miss them, but as I wasn’t walking out at the Refuge last winter, this will be the fourth season of discovery for me out there. I imagine it will be a Rogers and Hammerstein experience with the wind whipping down the plains… The cranes will be back in early March.